Introit – Black Dog by Oliver J Olinger

Introit – Black Dog by Oliver J Olinger
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Paranormal, Horror, Contemporary, Action/Adventure
Length: Short Story (12 pages)
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

Paul Auxten, a former government operative attempting to live out the rest of his life as a bartender in a small Florida town, is approached by an unusual man about a job. On the surface, the job appears to be a simple, one-night rescue operation for a prized, black dog that has been stolen by an underground dog-fighting enthusiast. Paul learns, however, that the dog in question is not of this world. The animal escapes during the rescue and a supernatural bloodbath ensues. Together with Toma Pietruszka, his new employer, Paul finally tracks down and captures the dog, only to be visited by an unsettling character later that evening. This is the first book in a series of supernatural exploits starring Paul and Toma.

Here’s a hint: if it actually were an easy job, they probably wouldn’t be offering anyone so much money to complete it. If only Paul had realized this ahead of time.

A well-written description can make me feel like I’ve been transported to another time and place. Mr. Olinger’s settings were so richly detailed that my nose actually itched early on when he was describing a particularly run-down building. I could just about smell the dust and mold that must have been silently accumulating in its forgotten corners for years.

With that being said, some of the descriptions were a little too verbose for something this length. Stories as short as this one need to move very quickly in order to pack everything in. There were a few times when the descriptions slowed down the pacing. There’s room for these kinds of pauses in a novella or full-length novel, but they occasionally did feel out of place for this particular tale.

All of the most important plot threads were tied up, but there’s still a lot about Paul that I don’t know. I hope I’ll get the chance to follow him on future adventures. He’s the kind of protagonist that shows a lot of promise. This is the kind of introduction to a new series that immediately captures my attention due to its intriguing premise and all of the questions it leaves unanswered.

I’d recommend Introit – Black Dog to anyone who enjoys the darker side of science fiction.

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